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Champion Palmer named as McLaren AUTOSPORT BRDC Award finalist

Wednesday, September 30 2015

Will Palmer, the 2015 Duo BRDC Formula 4 Champion, has been selected as one of the six finalists for the prestigious 2015 McLaren AUTOSPORT BRDC Award. Jake Hughes, the inaugural BRDC Formula 4 Champion in 2013, has also been chosen as a finalist for the award, following a successful season competing in both Formula Renault ALPS and Eurocup this year.

18 year-old Palmer, the youngest driver to be nominated, will undergo fitness and simulator assessments before a two-day test on the Grand Prix Circuit at Silverstone in Formula 2, DTM Mercedes and McLaren GT3 machinery. Both Palmer and Hughes will compete against four other highly-rated British single-seater racers to win the unrivalled prize, with the overall winner receiving a McLaren F1 test, £100,000 cash, full BRDC membership and an Arai GP-6 RC carbon crash helmet.

The other finalists include Hughes' fellow Formula Renault Eurocup title challengers Ben Barnicoat and Jack Aitken, plus MSA Formula driver Ricky Collard and 2014 MSV F3 Cup Champion Toby Sowery. The sextet was selected by a panel comprising BRDC President Derek Warwick, two-time British Touring Car Champion Jason Plato, McLaren's Andrew Kirkaldy and Mark Williams, leading circuit commentator Ian Titchmarsh, AUTOSPORT features Editor Scott Mitchell and Motorsport News Editor Kevin Turner. The winner will be announced at the end-of-season AUTOSPORT Awards in London in December.

Will's nomination continues a strong trend of BRDC Formula 4 drivers' participation in the award. George Russell, Sennan Fielding and 2013 graduate Seb Morris were all selected in the final six in 2014, with that year's BRDC Formula 4 Champion Russell winning the prize.

Palmer said: "I am really looking forward to it and I think it will be an amazing couple of days. The cars that you get to drive there are awesome, especially the DTM car which I think is renowned for its level of grip for a tin-top car. In terms of challenging for the award, I think that George Russell showed that the F4 Champion can compete so I definitely will try and do as much as I can to beat the other guys. Obviously the other nominees are hugely talented and it will be tough but I will be doing everything I can to take the award."

Previous winners of the award include David Coulthard, Jenson Button, Anthony Davidson and Dario Franchitti.